Art Romero says he wants to own up to what he calls one of the worst moments of his life.
“I can’t tell you how much I apologize to San Diego, the community and everybody involved with this whole fiasco,” Romero said.
Members of the San Diego Gay Men's Chorus were not allowed to sing the national anthem at Saturday night's Dodgers-Padres game at Petco Park. About 100 men from the chorus walked onto the baseball field before the game to sing, but when it was time to begin, a recording of a woman singing the national anthem was broadcast across the stadium. The men were then escorted off the field, not sure why they weren't given a chance to sing.
One day later, the Padres followed up stating they concluded their internal investigation and "found no evidence of malicious intent on the part of any individuals involved."
Tuesday, on FOX 5 Morning News, Romero explained that he inadvertently played the prerecorded National Anthem version from the night before.
“I didn’t intervene enough to take it down, or take the right step to correct it,” Romero said. “At a moment of panic, I wish I would have been thinking more clearly.”
“For me to shut down the national anthem while it was going on would have been more disrespectful. There are so many sides of disrespect all around, I think it would have been disrespectful to everybody on every side,” Romero said. “In hindsight, I probably should have not played anything. I made a mistake, but I definitely won’t be doing it again.”
Although fired, the local San Diegan says he still stands by his team and community.
“San Diego all the way, all day," he said.
Romero says he's grateful to have received support from the community, despite his mistake.